Seasonal sniffles: Know the signs of Christmas Tree Syndrome
A local doctor says there might be a link between feeling sick and bringing home your Christmas tree.
A study, co-authored by a Hartford HealthCare allergist, found that homes with Christmas trees contain five times more mold spores.
“The one common factor was the Christmas tree,” said Dr. Philip Hemmers.
People experience Christmas Tree Syndrome due to allergy-triggering mold being brought into their homes.
Dr. Hemmers, a St. Vincent’s Medical Center allergy specialist, says people may suffer from asthmatic symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, and wheezing.
He says mold, dust and other allergens can also gather in artificial trees stored in attics.
“If you’re putting the Christmas tree in a warm and humid room, it’s going to grow mold at a much higher rate. So, keeping a dehumidifier is also something that could be helpful,” said Dr.Hemmers.
He says without a fever, the allergy symptoms should not be alarming or cause people to cancel holiday gatherings.
Officials say there are steps people can take to minimize allergies to Christmas trees.
The American Christmas Tree Association suggests people clean off their trees with a hose or air compressor to reduce the debris.